This isn’t seasonal since tomatoes aren’t due for another four to six weeks unless you count the hydroponic greenhouse toms at USGM. I think you can cut me some slack though.
Ricotta gnocchi with simple tomato sauce
The recipe for the tomato sauce is from Marcella Hazan‘s Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking. Take the best tomatoes you have — if you have fresh, use fresh; if you have canned, those are fine –, one onion sliced in half and a lump of unsalted butter. Simmer uncovered on medium to medium-low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally or until droplets of fat separate themselves from the tomato. Discard the onion when the sauce is done, add a pinch of salt to taste and use as needed.
This is my go-to sauce when making gnocchi or when I have fresh pasta on hand. When you make this sauce for the first time, you’ll be tempted to doctor it with additional ingredients. Don’t. It’s a wonderfully light sauce that’s suffused with the essence of tomato and a whisper of onion. The butter makes the sauce. Don’t use olive oil, don’t add garlic or herbs. Then, once you’ve had it pure the first time around, add as you see fit.
This sauce has a permanent place in my repertoire. It’s amazing.